Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Friday, October 05, 2012

Bradley: Lousy call, lousy game, lousy system: A lousy Braves’ exit

The one-game play-in…the worst idea since The Elvis Vegiform? You decide! I have…and I ain’t watching.

Why to hate baseball’s newly minted play-in game: Because you can be, as the Braves were over the course of six months, the demonstrably better team and still give a performance than fuses the three-error Brooks Conrad game of October 2010 and the Epic Collapse of September 2011. Because you can go home having sipped from the postseason cup for all of 189 minutes. Because you can put yourself in position to be rooked by those darn replacement umps.

Wait. These aren’t replacements? These are the real umpires? Is this a real sport?

Had Andrelton Simmons’ pop that dropped been allowed to stand, the Braves would have had the bases loaded and one out. When you’re trailing by three runs in the eighth inning, that’s rather different than having men on second and third with two out, which is what they wound up having. But not before the game was halted for 19 minutes as the field was cleared of the cups and bottles that had been flung, with somewhat greater accuracy than the Braves’ infielders displayed this night, by incensed patrons.

...We’re lucky that, as time does its work, we’ll have our memories of Chipper Jones to keep us warm. And maybe someday we can get past the strange doings on a lousy night in October 2012, when a good team played badly and got unlucky to boot, and thanks to this silly professional “system” it was eliminated. At least in the College World Series they play double elimination.

Repoz Posted: October 05, 2012 at 10:29 PM | 266 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: braves, cardinals

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

Page 3 of 3 pages  < 1 2 3
   201. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: October 06, 2012 at 03:32 PM (#4256882)
Seems to me that there's a rather elegant equity in the scheduling.
...
What's wrong with any of that?


Nothing. Except that the stated reason for changing the format was to make it harder on the wild card teams. If that's the case, then making the wild card winner play again the next day, preferably after a long flight, would seem to be the way to go. And of course, it isn't being done this way for equity, it's being done this way for TV scheduling purposes.
   202. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 06, 2012 at 03:37 PM (#4256886)
Except that the IFF rule doesn't protect against this. It allows the runners to hold their bags without risk of being forced out at the base they would otherwise be forced to advance to; it does not absolve them of the obligation to return to their bags in the event of a catch. Runners may advance at their own risk, whether the ball is caught or not, but they must tag up if the ball is caught.

Of course it protects against what I described. Without the infield fly call, runners — like the ones last night — have to drift much farther off their base in order to hedge against a no-catch, whether an intentional no-catch or unintentional no-catch.

That makes no sense Joe. The reason why the runner on 2nd got to 3rd so quickly was that the SS peeled away and the LF was not close to the ball. So the runner(s) had a pretty good idea that the ball was not going to be caught at that point.

No way. You believe the runner noticed Kozma bail out a half-second before the ball dropped and then ran 30-45 feet in that second or half-second? Not possible. The runner reached third no more than 2 seconds after the ball dropped, and he no more than jogged the last 10-15 feet.

Your argument would equally apply to many routine flyballs to LF with runners at 1st and 2nd. The runner at 2nd has to take a few steps off of 2nd in the off chance that the ball is not caught so he can make it to 3rd safely, but he cannot stray too far off of 2nd for fear of being doubled off in the very likely chance that the ball is caught.

No, it wouldn't. There's no way a dropped fly ball to LF (intentional or unintentional) results in a DP unless the runner on first blows out his knee or something. But the shallow fly balls, like last night's, can result in a DP either with a catch or with no catch.

As many have stated, the reason for the rule is important. If the umpire(s) cannot understand that, they should not be umpiring major league games. The chance of that ball being turned into an easy double play after letting it drop was approximately .000001%.

But, again, the ball didn't need to drop to become a DP. Since the infield fly hadn't been called, the runner at second had drifted halfway to third. Without the infield fly call, last night's play could have been a DP with a catch.
   203. SoSH U at work Posted: October 06, 2012 at 03:41 PM (#4256889)
Again, the IFF rule does no good if it isn't called immediately.


That's simply not true. Obviously, the earlier it's called the better. But a late IF fly call still gives the baserunners more information than the alternative that people are advocating, which was not calling it at all. Once Holbrook called it last night, the Braves baserunners had the opportunity to begin to retreat to their existing bags rather than remain halfway.

That's why the rulebook specifically says "When it seems apparent that a batted ball will be an Infield Fly, the umpire shall immediately declare 'Infield Fly' for the benefit of the runners." Immediately.


"When it seems apparent."

Holbrook did not make the call until it seemed apparent that it was an IF fly situation (basically, right after Kozma abandoned his side saddle pursit and began back pedaling, which generally signifies to all that he's going to make the play comfortably). The immediate refers to the fact that the umpire should call it as soon as he determines it's an infield fly situation. If there was some time limit upon which the call must be made in relation to the ball's flight, it would be written that way. It isn't.


   204. BDC Posted: October 06, 2012 at 03:48 PM (#4256896)
I think the rule should be amended so that it can only be called if the fielder has established position under the ball for a set amount of time

In practice, though, it's usually called as soon as the umpire judges the arc of the popup (keeping his eye everlastingly on the ball). That means the batter is out [EDIT: if the ball stays fair] whether anyone camps under the thing or not. Oddly enough, also in practice, you've got a high popup that could be taken by a number of fielders somewhere in the middle of the diamond, sometimes staggering around trying to gauge the wind and such: a DP wouldn't always be automatic under such circumstances. But the rule is written to avoid judgements like "could it have been a DP" or "was he camped." And that makes sense: an umpire should judge basic if-then-not stuff, not weird continuations of play that might have eventuated or the alignment of people with extrapolated trajectories of the ball. There's enough of that in the NFL :)
   205. Brian Posted: October 06, 2012 at 03:51 PM (#4256899)
If Holliday had continued coming full-tilt, he'd have either made the catch or (potentially) played it on one hop. If the latter, he gets the 7-5 force at third. If the runner on first headed back to tag, assuming that the ball had been caught (let's say it's a close catch/trap call), Freese might have a chance to force the runner at second for the DP.


Why would the runner on first go back to tag? If it's caught Uggla, the runner on second, wouldn't be able to tag up on Johnny Damon, so going back to tag is just too stupid to bring up as justification.
   206. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: October 06, 2012 at 03:56 PM (#4256905)
Of course it protects against what I described.


You wrote, "there would have been a clear DP opportunity at 2B and probably an easy DP opportunity at 2B." My point is that this opportunity was not removed by the invoking of the IFF rule.

That's simply not true.


OK, then. The IFF rule rarely does much good if it isn't called much earlier than Holbrook called this one.

The immediate refers to the fact that the umpire should call it as soon as he determines it's an infield fly situation.


Note that I quoted that part of the rule (and emphasized the word "immediately") in order to respond to a specific suggestion that the call should not be made until a fielder is stationary under the ball for two seconds. Do you really think that such a delay should be built into the rule? If not, then why take my comment out of context like that?

Let me try a different formulation of my position: if you cannot determine that it's an IFF until the ball is just about to hit the ground, then it isn't an IFF.
   207. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:02 PM (#4256911)
You wrote, "there would have been a clear DP opportunity at 2B and probably an easy DP opportunity at 2B." My point is that this opportunity was not removed by the invoking of the IFF rule.

Right, but the opportunity only existed because the infield fly wasn't called earlier.
   208. SoSH U at work Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:04 PM (#4256914)
Note that I quoted that part of the rule (and emphasized the word "immediately") in order to respond to a specific suggestion that the call should not be made until a fielder is stationary under the ball for two seconds. Do you really think that such a delay should be built into the rule? If not, then why take my comment out of context like that?


No, I don't think such a delay should be built into the rule (actually, I'm in favor of getting rid of the rule altogether*. There's simply no need for it).

But, as long as it's going to exist, I want umpires treating it like Holbrook did (while granting that it may very well have been too deep to call at all). When Kozma was pursuing the ball at a faster speed, while running side saddle, Holbrook eschewed making the call. But when Kozma started back pedaling, which, when done by an infielder on a pop up, can generally can be interpreted by all participants as "I got it," Holbrook called for the IF fly. It's later than usual because of the nature of the play, but I wouldn't want it called any earlier on this particular play, and I don't think you just ignore it because the conditions for an IF fly aren't established until later than normal.

* Treder and I are pretty much the co-proponents of that rule change, Bob.
   209. Mike A Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:06 PM (#4256916)
I admit the 'immediately' necessity throws a monkey wrench in my two second plan. Maybe one second would be better...but it's still an issue.

I'm not sure there are any easy solutions here. Perhaps the best idea I've seen is to just limit the defense to one out.
   210. Rob_Wood Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:08 PM (#4256919)
Joe, you really don't know what you are talking about.
   211. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:16 PM (#4256931)
Joe, you really don't know what you are talking about.

Well, then, I'd appreciate it if you could edify me.

You seem to believe the runner at second would have been halfway even if the infield fly had been called earlier and/or that a runner could retreat 45 feet faster than the SS or LF could have thrown the ball 100 feet. Both of those are bad assumptions.
   212. Dale H. Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:19 PM (#4256935)

If it had been called an infield fly, and THEN Kozma bailed out, I don't envision a lot of controversy. Because Kozma was still keeping an eye on the baserunners, he wasn't facing the outfield wall at any point.
Yeah, but a fly out to shallow left, he was probably watching the ball the entire time. At the Ted, the backlit ball makes it hard to pick up if you lose it. So he probably has no idea of the situation, other than that he needs to make that catch.

And for people asking why Medlen was asked to stay in and give up five runs -- he didn't. If Chipper turns the DP, you have a bases-empty double followed by three straight outs. If Uggla could play defense, you have an out followed by whatever the hell Descalso does instead of bunting. Medlen made a mistake pitch to Holliday, one of your better hitters in the game.

Fredi's real questionable decision was the call he made once he did decide to go to the pen. Down two runs, eight outs to get, and a runner on third, I go to Kimbrel to try to get a strikeout and strand that runner, and hope I can ride him at least 1.2 innings. O'Flaherty for the ninth, if it still has meaning (or Kimbrel if he feels he can make it).
   213. BDC Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:23 PM (#4256938)
Treder and I are pretty much the co-proponents of that rule change, Bob

Noted, in future it will be the SoSHUtreder Rule :)
   214. Rob_Wood Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:24 PM (#4256939)
The issue is not if there might have been a double play if the ball had been caught (runners could stand on their bags to prevent that). So that has no bearing on an infield fly situation. It is idiotic to bring that up.
   215. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:31 PM (#4256946)
The issue is not if there might have been a double play if the ball had been caught (runners could stand on their bags to prevent that). So that has no bearing on an infield fly situation. It is idiotic to bring that up.

If the infield fly isn't called, they can't just stand on their bags. That's a recipe for a DP or even triple play (if the bases are loaded).
   216. Rob_Wood Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:34 PM (#4256948)
Not sure if serious. What are you talking about. I assure you the chance of that ball yesterday being a double play was ZERO.
   217. BDC Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:36 PM (#4256950)
It remains the archetypal inscrutable rule. Last night I was sitting beside a knowledgeable young Orioles fan who was telling me about the Braves/Cardinals IF fly debacle. Then, with one runner on at first, one out, Adam Jones hit a pop fly to the infield, and my neighbor says, "Like that, that's an infield fly right there." I corrected him nicely, but didn't feel I could start to explain the rule, or else we'd still be sitting there now.
   218. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:39 PM (#4256952)
Not sure if serious. What are you talking about.

Yes, actually, I am serious. If you think the runners would just "stand on their bags" on a 175- or 200-foot fly to LF without the infield fly being called, you don't know what you're talking about. (And you obviously didn't watch the play that inspired this thread, since the runners were halfway by the time infield fly was called.)

I assure you the chance of that ball yesterday being a double play was ZERO.

You believe the runner at second could have retreated 45 feet in less time than a standing Pete Kozma could have thrown the ball 100 feet?
   219. Rob_Wood Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:45 PM (#4256955)
JFC are you retarded. The reason the runners were off the bags was that it was a tough play and nobody was camped under it. Shut up now.
   220. Mayor Blomberg Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:48 PM (#4256956)
It's later than usual because of the nature of the play, but I wouldn't want it called any earlier on this particular play, and I don't think you just ignore it because the conditions for an IF fly aren't established until later than normal.


but if it takes so long to figure out, it's not an ordinary-effort play!
   221. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:52 PM (#4256958)
JFC are you retarded. The reason the runners were off the bags was that it was a tough play and nobody was camped under it. Shut up now.

LOL. You seem to be lost; let me help you out.
   222. PreservedFish Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:55 PM (#4256960)
So wait a second. Apologies if this is stupid or already discussed. When Holbrook called IFF, nobody noticed it, and the runners advanced. But the fact that the ball hit the ground is immaterial - it was for all intents and purposes a normal fly out according to the rule. And both of those runners advanced without retouching their bases. Could (should) they have been put out during the play or on appeal?
   223. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:57 PM (#4256961)
And both of those runners advanced without retouching their bases. Could (should) they have been put out during the play or on appeal?

Infield fly means the batter is out, but the runners don't need to (and, frankly, couldn't) tag up on a ball that isn't caught.
   224. PreservedFish Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:59 PM (#4256963)
OK. Thank you.
   225. Mayor Blomberg Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:59 PM (#4256964)
People who think Starlin Castro was as far into the outfield as Kozma really need to clean their screens and look again. Period.
   226. Rob_Wood Posted: October 06, 2012 at 04:59 PM (#4256965)
Hey Joe, do you know who I am? Just wondering.
   227. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:02 PM (#4256966)
Hey Joe, do you know who I am? Just wondering.

A guy whose argument style is better suited to Bleacher Report?
   228. Sunday silence Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:06 PM (#4256967)
congratulations netizens on having perhaps the dumbest complaints about a controversial call ever.

1. "the call was not made immediately." This is silly, we've had these discussions before. A call is not invalidated by how long it takes an ump to make it. It is quite obvious that in case of a high pop up it may take a while to determine where the ball will land, it may be too difficult to catch or maybe an outfield fly. Obviously the ump had to determine where the ball will land. So that call cannot be made instantly.

It is also been said that that call can be made after the catch is made. I dont recall ever seeing it that way, but it wouldnt suprise me, GIVEN THE INTENT of the rule (which the complainers keep citing). The timing of call was not bad, and it is quite irreleavant anyhow.

2. "it was not a routine play." Anytime you see a ball player with his feet planted and his arms upraised that usually means he is about to catch the ball. The almost never drop those. I'll bet those are caught like 99.5% of the time. No matter what stat you cite, it's going to be very high.

2b "he wasnt camped." WTF? He was stopped moving and his arms were in position to catch it. What else do you want? Imagine the same play happening at say 2b with the SS in the same posture. Obviously he's about to catch the ball, the only difference is he's far into the OF.

The rule seems to mention "ordinary effort" or some such. The fact that the SS is running or whatever is silly, the make running catches all the time, and it's not extraordinary. It's probably not routine, but I think that's why it says ordinary effort. He's not makign a routine catch but it's not extraordinary either. Apparently the rule of thumb (based on what some experienced playcalls say) is that they look to see if the SS is turned or facing the INF. It seems to me he was facing the INF and certainly not clearly back turned. How else do you want to call that? If the SS is 100 feet into the OF it's extraordinary effort?

Did the SS get there in plenty of time? Yes. Does anyone disagree on that? WHy?

Other than the players posture, what the hell else do you expect the umpire to go on to determine this? All he has is the position of the SS and hopefully the path of the ball.

2c "That the ball ended up 5 feet behind the SS" That's because the SS backed off for some reason (maybe he saw the hand go up)
How is the ump supposed to determine if a catch is extraordinary based on where the ball lands? It landed there only because the SS backed off. You really think thats not an easy catch for a professional? Its not relevant where the ball ended up if the catch was not extraordinary effort.

3. "Only one ump made the call." Yeah this is silly, that's all it takes. Look closely at the photo/GIF. the 3B ump has his hand up as well, but it doesnt even matter.

4. "They couldnt have turned two." Maybe not, but I've seen CLemente and Maz turn two on ball hit to short RF vs the Cubs in April '72. Granted these are excellent fielders. But THATS NOT THE POINT.

The rule is not written that way. We all know the intent of the rule, but the umps job is just to call it as the rule is written. Ordinary effort, etc.

5. "The ump should have considered the crowd noise, etc." Are you sh!tting me?

Yeah the ball was unusually deep for such a call. But that's his judgment its not impossible that a DP coudl be turned and it's not really relevant for determining that in the moment.

Save it people. There are bound to be some really egregious calls starting in a day or two.
   229. Rob_Wood Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:07 PM (#4256969)
Can someone remind me how do you put someone on ignore? Thanks.
   230. Mayor Blomberg Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:08 PM (#4256972)
Rob -- you don't read their posts or reply to them.
   231. Sunday silence Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:09 PM (#4256973)

but if it takes so long to figure out, it's not an ordinary-effort play!


you are insane. It takes long because of the height of the ball. Not because the play is easy or hard to make. How you can misconstrue that is beyond me.
   232. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:10 PM (#4256974)
Can someone remind me how do you put someone on ignore? Thanks.

Before you do, could you tell me who you are? I'm genuinely curious, and Google didn't help much.

(What a weird thread ...)
   233. cardsfanboy Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:15 PM (#4256979)
Before you do, could you tell me who you are? I'm genuinely curious, and Google didn't help much.


He's one of the early stat researchers, beyond that, no clue.
   234. SoSH U at work Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:15 PM (#4256980)
So wait a second. Apologies if this is stupid or already discussed. When Holbrook called IFF, nobody noticed it, and the runners advanced. But the fact that the ball hit the ground is immaterial - it was for all intents and purposes a normal fly out according to the rule. And both of those runners advanced without retouching their bases. Could (should) they have been put out during the play or on appeal?


No, the rule is that if the ball is caught, it's treated as any other ball that's caught, and the runners must retouch the base before they can advance. If the ball hits the turf, they can advance without retouching. A little odd, but it's the only way the rule is workable (other than simply making it a deadball as soon as IF fly is called).

   235. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:17 PM (#4256982)
He's one of the early stat researchers, beyond that, no clue.

Oh, I didn't know that. I guess he feels that makes him an authority on the infield fly rule.

Just another day on the internet, I guess ...
   236. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:17 PM (#4256983)

Joe, here you go.
   237. Tippecanoe Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:19 PM (#4256987)
congratulations netizens on having perhaps the dumbest complaints about a controversial call ever


If only someone of your wonderful intellect had arrived sooner! Thank you so much for eliminating any possible requirement for further discussion!
   238. PreservedFish Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:22 PM (#4256990)
Ha, Wiki Gonzalez! How often does that thing get updated these days?
   239. cardsfanboy Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:27 PM (#4256998)
After giving it several hours I'll say this

1. It was a horrible call, no amount of revisionistic history can change that simple fact.
2. It's slightly possible that it might have been a correct call, but in the real world of baseball, that call is never made, and it shouldn't have been made in that situation with the stakes.
2a. Of course that opinion is based upon the fact that Kozma screwed up. If the infield fly rule wasn't called, and Kozma caught the ball, as a fan you really need to examine whether he could have gotten a double play... but the truth is, that there was absolutely zero chance that he could have gotten a double play by dropping the ball, so there was no reason to call infield fly rule.
3. It more than likely would not have made a difference in the game, yes the Cardinals bullpen sucks, but still it would have been bases loaded one out 6-3 game in favor of the Cardinals.

Ultimately it was a horrible call, horrible way to end the Braves season and Chipper's hof career, but in the big picture, I don't think it affects the final results of the game.

edit: of course I'm a Cardinal fan, so of course I obviously see it that way. (mind you, I'm also a Cardinal fan that doesn't think Denkinger cost the Cardinal the '85 World Series, or even game 6)
   240. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:31 PM (#4257002)
Ha, Wiki Gonzalez! How often does that thing get updated these days?

I thought it was supposed to disappear, but it seems to have been spared, if not resurrected with updates. Some of the writing there is incredibly funny. The encyclopedic recaps of BBTF's great battles (and characters) are great.
   241. Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:35 PM (#4257003)
If the infield fly rule wasn't called, and Kozma caught the ball, as a fan you really need to examine whether he could have gotten a double play... but the truth is, that there was absolutely zero chance that he could have gotten a double play by dropping the ball, so there was no reason to call infield fly rule.

It's kind of funny: If the bases had been loaded, the call would have made much more sense, but it probably would have generated even more outrage if the same result occurred (i.e., Kozma bailing and the ball dropping), since the Braves would have been a run closer to tying the game.
   242. Everybody Loves Tyrus Raymond Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:36 PM (#4257004)
Former Cardinal manager disallows the protest. Nice. They couldn't even get an impartial figurehead to make the call.


Um, well, he's also a "former Braves manager" if that makes you feel any better.
   243. calhounite Posted: October 06, 2012 at 05:46 PM (#4257011)
Great call. Ump handled it perfectly. Concentrated on the flight of the ball. Then, when and only when the ball was coming down enabling this judgement, ascertained there was an infielder camped under it within a few feet of estimated (and actual) landing spot. Made the call as prescribed under these conditions. Not his job to watch baserunners. Not his job to adjudge deepness of fly ball. That rule was written to prevent gaming double plays does not mean that every instance as described by these conditions is necessarily relevant to preventing the gaming. Frickin great call. One of the best ever.

Wins the make the correct call even at the certainity of provoking the ire of raving, mad, lunatic, frothing at the mouth psychos award.

   244. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: October 06, 2012 at 06:16 PM (#4257026)
That rule was written to prevent gaming double plays does not mean that every instance as described by these conditions is necessarily relevant to preventing the gaming.


Actually, it does. The rule exists solely to prevent "gaming double plays." Any instance where it is not relevant to preventing the gaming is a misapplication of the rule. By definition. Whether yesterday's play was or was not a misapplication of the rule is debatable, of course. That's why people have been debating it.
   245. SoSH U at work Posted: October 06, 2012 at 06:33 PM (#4257047)
Any instance where it is not relevant to preventing the gaming is a misapplication of the rule. By definition.


That's not true. AFAICT, there is no mention of the double play at all in the infield fly rule. There is no specification that the umpire should consider whether a double play could be made. You could argue that it should be there, and you are right that the reason it exists to begin with is to prevent gamed double plays, but the rules do not in any way state the likelihood for teh defense to turn a double play is a consideration for determining whether the IF fly is in effect.

   246. cardsfanboy Posted: October 06, 2012 at 06:38 PM (#4257052)
That's not true. AFAICT, there is no mention of the double play at all in the infield fly rule. There is no specification that the umpire should consider whether a double play could be made. You could argue that it should be there, and you are right that the reason it exists to begin with is to prevent gamed double plays, but the rules do not in any way state the likelihood for teh defense to turn a double play is a consideration for determining whether the IF fly is in effect.


That is what is one of the major things wrong with the world then. Lawyers looking at the letter of the rule instead of the purpose or spirit of the rule.
   247. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: October 06, 2012 at 06:42 PM (#4257053)
That is what is one of the major things wrong with the world then. Lawyers looking at the letter of the rule instead of the purpose or spirit of the rule.

The opposite approach tends to lead to more injustice, not less.
   248. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: October 06, 2012 at 06:49 PM (#4257065)
the rules do not in any way state the likelihood for teh defense to turn a double play is a consideration


You will note that I did not write, "Any instance where gaming the play to turn a double play is unlikely is a misapplication of the rule." You can certainly argue that the relative "likelihood" of turning the DP should not be considered. But IMO, you cannot argue that a situation where turning the DP is literally not possible is one where the rule should be invoked. And again, I was responding to what I consider to be a specific error in a specific post. I was not arguing that the DP was literally impossible in last night's case. I do happen to think that it was highly unlikely, but that is not why I think the call was wrong.
   249. cardsfanboy Posted: October 06, 2012 at 06:50 PM (#4257066)
The opposite approach tends to lead to more injustice, not less.


I don't see how.(assuming you aren't talking about restrictive laws which purpose was designed to limit a minority type of crap) This rule was designed to prevent gaming of a fly ball into a double play. The ump should react according to what is reasonably possible, not what the letter of the rule says, especially since it's a judgement play per the actual rule.

   250. SoSH U at work Posted: October 06, 2012 at 07:14 PM (#4257102)
You will note that I did not write, "Any instance where gaming the play to turn a double play is unlikely is a misapplication of the rule." You can certainly argue that the relative "likelihood" of turning the DP should not be considered. But IMO, you cannot argue that a situation where turning the DP is literally not possible is one where the rule should be invoked.


Yes, you actually can. As the rule is written, these are the conditions that must be present for an IF fly: Runners on first and second, or runners on first, second and third. One out or less.

This is what the umpire must consider: Can the ball be caught by an infielder through ordinary effort? Is it fair?

This is what the ump msut do: Once that determination is made, make the call immediately.

There is no instruction to the umpire to consider whether a double play is possible. It's not there. If MLB wanted it to be there, MLB had ample opportunity to insert that into the rulebook.

You're free to argue that the umpires should consider whether the double play is possible. Or free to petition MLB to make that change to the rulebook. But this statement: "Any instance where it is not relevant to preventing the gaming is a misapplication of the rule. By definition." is false. It is the opposite of a "misapplication of the rules." It is an application of the rules as the MLB rulebook is written.


   251. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: October 06, 2012 at 07:14 PM (#4257103)

cfb, I think the idea is to reduce the amount of judgment that the umpire is forced to make, especially on the fly like that. Obviously judgment calls are inevitable, but asking an umpire to evaluate whether a double play is possible if the fielding team intentionally lets the ball drop on every fly ball is a recipe for even more controversy than we had yesterday.
   252. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: October 06, 2012 at 07:35 PM (#4257123)
I don't see how.(assuming you aren't talking about restrictive laws which purpose was designed to limit a minority type of crap) This rule was designed to prevent gaming of a fly ball into a double play. The ump should react according to what is reasonably possible, not what the letter of the rule says, especially since it's a judgement play per the actual rule.


Giving umpires the authority to decide on a whim whether to apply a rule as written or not is just a spectacularly bad idea. Yes you would get some calls like yesterday, where you can make an arguable case that not applying the rule would be fairer. But for each of those you'd have dozens of cases that are at least as controversial, where applying the rule as written would have been fairest. And on top of that, you create an environment, where players can never be sure whether an umpire will apply a rule as written or not. That's just a recipe for chaos.

Just considering the most basic umpire duty, calling balls and strikes. I can't understand how anybody could look at how umpires handle that, and think that giving them more authority to bend and break the rules would lead to more fairness.
   253. calhounite Posted: October 06, 2012 at 07:56 PM (#4257150)
An ump would have to have 4 sets of eyeballs and a scout's knowledge of baserunners and infielders to adjudge likelihood of gaming success. Let's see. 0.00000001 likelihood is okay, but 0 is not. What tha -.

It's a frickin infielder. It's enough that the set of instances rule includes completely covers subset of gaming instances. And if the infielder drops the ball in non-gaming situation, likely that failure is penalized by having baserunners advance. Hey, they did. So what's the ####### about.
   254. Mayor Blomberg Posted: October 06, 2012 at 08:13 PM (#4257174)
Considering that the rule is in effect with <2 outs and >1 runner in a force position, it's entirely about gaming DPs. (Hint: the batter is expected to run it out, would be at first, and thus would not be the back-end of a DP.)
   255. SoSH U at work Posted: October 06, 2012 at 08:25 PM (#4257197)
Considering that the rule is in effect with <2 outs and >1 runner in a force position, it's entirely about gaming DPs. (Hint: the batter is expected to run it out, would be at first, and thus would not be the back-end of a DP.)


Sure, I don't dispute what the rule is about. I'm merely pointing out how the rule is to be executed. And there is simply no mention of the DP. In fact, in the comment section under the Definition of Terms for IF Fly, it specifically says the umpire is to rule "whether the ball could ordinarily have been handled by an infielder - not by some arbitrary limitation such as the grass or the base line."




   256. Mayor Blomberg Posted: October 06, 2012 at 08:42 PM (#4257212)
On necessarily disagreeing on what's in the text, but the arbitrary limits rejected are topographic.
   257. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: October 06, 2012 at 10:19 PM (#4257322)
Wiki! Forgot about that thing... I was glad we had it.
   258. UCCF Posted: October 06, 2012 at 11:03 PM (#4257409)
Hey Joe, do you know who I am? Just wondering.

A guy whose argument style is better suited to Bleacher Report?


It's funny - he asked me the same thing.

I guess I'm supposed to know who he is. Rob Wood - is it Rob Base?

EDIT: I guess I should have kept reading. So to answer, no, I didn't know who he was. But I'm sure even Steven Hawking miscalculates the tip on his bill once in a while.
   259. spycake Posted: October 06, 2012 at 11:29 PM (#4257443)
Don't know if anyone has suggested this yet (haven't read the whole thread), but couldn't an infielder "deke" the umpire and act as Kozma did, to avoid a difficult/impossible catch? Call for the ball, act like he's camped under it, get the infield fly call while the ball drops somewhere between him and the LF. The LF could play deeper that way, and they could do this deke on any ball between them. The umpire is obviously watching the SS so he doesn't know where the ball is going to land. If done often enough, the umpire will probably catch on and not call it (or maybe the 3rd base ump won't fall for it at all), but that theory just further reinforces that this was a bad call. Some of these "deke" plays wouldn't look too much different than this one did (actually, with less movement from Kozma, the deke would probably look more like an infield fly than this play did).

Maybe they should just instruct the LF/RF line umps in the playoffs to NOT make any infield fly calls -- just leave those to the normal base umps. I agree that there positioning would probably give them a better feel for the call.
   260. Lassus Posted: October 07, 2012 at 08:51 AM (#4257602)
Believe it or not, I'm linking a different BTF thread here, because it's excellent but I think that too many people will avoid it due to the HAROLD REYNOLDS portion of the headline.

It is very good.
   261. Downtown Bookie Posted: October 07, 2012 at 09:26 AM (#4257607)
# 260 - Thank you, Lassus. That is indeed very good.

DB
   262. BDC Posted: October 07, 2012 at 10:26 AM (#4257624)
Yes, that Harold thread makes it very clear. I was wrong above to criticize how the play was called. Seems like the umpires had it under control quite normally.
   263. Sunday silence Posted: October 07, 2012 at 10:50 AM (#4257641)
I cant believe ppl are still going on about this. The ump called it strictly in accordance with the rule as written. The rule says nothing about whether a DP is possible, how can you argue that, when it's not in the rule? You want umps to call it strictly by the letter that's a good thing.

If Kozma had simply made the catch with is at likely a 99% event, then we arent even having this discussion. The only reason we are having this discussion is cause Kozma backed off AFTER the ump had already ruled it an INF fly. Its similar to calling the time out and then something happens you dont like.

Ask yourself this: if there was no IFF call, would you have ruled it an error? It suggests to me the effort is ordinary, not routine but not extraordinary.

The idea that a professional ballplayer cant normally make a catch on a ball while he's running or backpedaling 2 mph is insane. we've seen horrid calls, this is not one.

the link to the video is excellent. The timing of the call is consistent with other calls. ANd the area it took place is consistent with other calls. You ought to give the ump credit for doing it by the book This is what we want.
   264. Sunday silence Posted: October 07, 2012 at 11:25 AM (#4257652)
just for the record, in the bottom of the 6th inning of this game (6/25/1972) I saw dave cash/clemente/gene alley turn a DP vs the Cubs on a pop fly hit to short right center. Cash's back was turned to the infield when he fell down making the catch he flipped to clemente who flipped it to second base to double off the runner. I know the fly was in short right center, dont know the exact distance.....

http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/CHN/CHN197206250.shtml
   265. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 08, 2012 at 11:36 AM (#4259071)
.
   266. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 08, 2012 at 11:59 AM (#4259099)
Torre was correct; it was a judgment call that could not be protested. Holbrook was wrong; it was not a ball that could be caught by an infielder with ordinary effort. It did not satisfy the letter of the rule and certainly did not satisfy the spirit.


Holbrook was correct. The ball could have been caught by the SS with ordinary effort. People are getting confused by the fact that the SS peeled off, but if the SS had simply muffed the play and dropped the ball that he was clearly going to catch with ordinary effort, nobody would be questioning the call.

It is not possible for Holbrook to predict that the SS is about to peel off, any more than it is possible for Holbrook to predict that the SS (or any fielder) will be there and just screw up the catch.
Page 3 of 3 pages  < 1 2 3

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Dingbat_Charlie
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogHBT: Talking head says Jeter is “a fraud” and “you are all suckers”
(77 - 7:56am, Sep 21)
Last: Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip

NewsblogJohn Thorn: Fame & Fandom
(4 - 7:52am, Sep 21)
Last: Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip

NewsblogOT: Monthly NBA Thread - September 2014
(295 - 7:40am, Sep 21)
Last: Mirabelli Dictu (Chris McClinch)

NewsblogLindbergh: Dellin Betances’s Season & Bullpen Strategy
(4 - 4:01am, Sep 21)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogRoyals encounter problem with online sale of playoff tickets
(12 - 3:55am, Sep 21)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogOMNICHATTER 9-20-2014
(92 - 2:49am, Sep 21)
Last: Bunny Vincennes

NewsblogOT: September 2014 College Football thread
(316 - 1:56am, Sep 21)
Last: spike

NewsblogOT: Politics, September, 2014: ESPN honors Daily Worker sports editor Lester Rodney
(3398 - 1:31am, Sep 21)
Last: David Nieporent (now, with children)

NewsblogAthletics out of top wild-card spot, Texas sweeps
(5 - 1:24am, Sep 21)
Last: GregD

NewsblogEn Banc Court May Call Foul on Bonds Conviction
(38 - 12:41am, Sep 21)
Last: David Nieporent (now, with children)

NewsblogEsquire: Martone: The Death of Derek Jeter
(312 - 9:20pm, Sep 20)
Last: Omineca Greg

NewsblogKauffman Stadium ‘should be rocking’ as Royals face most important series in decades Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/sports/mlb/kansas-city-royals/article2157217.html#storylink=cpy
(1 - 7:25pm, Sep 20)
Last: boteman is not here 'til October

NewsblogKeri: How Washington Built a World Series Favorite
(58 - 5:55pm, Sep 20)
Last: Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip

NewsblogOT: The Soccer Thread, September 2014
(311 - 4:44pm, Sep 20)
Last: frannyzoo

NewsblogPedro pens a letter to Clayton Kershaw
(68 - 3:09pm, Sep 20)
Last: Avoid running at all times.-S. Paige

Page rendered in 0.7994 seconds
52 querie(s) executed